- Showing 10 posts published between Jun 01, 2011 and Jun 30, 2011 [Show all]
Mediation in penal case reconciliation
reviewed by Martin Wright
The idea of retribution for wrongdoing is deeply ingrained, and its extreme form is the blood feud or revenge killing. Professor Elezi describes the long struggle to eliminate it in one country. A Western reader, on learning that there are still blood feuds in parts of Albania, may dismiss them as a relic from more primitive times; but perhaps it is worth reflecting that the principle is still at work among gangs in our big cities and, some would say, in civil wars and international conflicts. So it is interesting to see how it has been tackled in Albania.
Netherlands child protection law grants families the right to make a plan
On March 15, 2011, the Netherlands Parliament voted unanimously to amend the Child Protection Act. The Act now grants parents or guardians of a child the right to meet with family and other involved friends or close family supporters to make their own plan regarding how to care for a child of concern. The right to meet and make a plan for a child comes as a first recourse before the state and courts are permitted to intervene.
Victim impact statements: Some concerns about current practice and proposed changes
Currently victims have the right to submit a VIS in a variety of ways, though it is usually in writing, and to request the opportunity to present the statement in open court. The judge has the discretion to deny this request and to edit the statement if there are concerns about its length or content. Under the new proposal, victims will have the right to use their own words in the VIS and “to address the offender so that the offender may better perceive the impact of the offence on the victim”. For serious offences (s.29 of the Victims Rights Act), victims will have an automatic right to present their VIS in court, though the judge retains the right to manage the process.
Crossing the line: Racial healing in a family and community
from the article by Phoebe Kilby on PeaceBuilder:
When I began my quest to determine if my family had owned slaves, I initially focused on slavery alone and my family’s involvement in it. But when I discovered descendants of my family’s slaves, I quickly learned that racial wounds inflicted during the Civil Rights era were much more important to them than any scars left from slavery. They had been denied equal educational opportunities and had been terrorized for demanding change. If I were to do something to nurture healing, I would need to address these more modern wounds.
Twenty years of restorative justice in New Zealand: Reflections of a judicial participant
from the article by Judge Fred McElrea:
The following aspects of the family group conference system stand out after 20 years as being both innovative and of potential value to adult systems as well:
What will happen to me?
3 million children are estimated to have a parent in prison on any given day in the United States. These children share the pains of separation experienced by other children who are without regular contact with one or both parents. Added to this, however, are the special pains of having a parent or parents in prison: shame, guilt, questions, often trauma that crosses generations.
Right and proper: Conservatives and criminal justice
from the article in The Economist:
The word commonly used to describe a politician who publicly announces he wants to send fewer criminals to prison is “loser”. But back in February there was David Williams, president of Kentucky’s Senate, speaking in favour of a bill that would do just that. The bill in question would steer non-violent offenders towards drug treatment rather than jail. It is projected to save $422m over the next decade, and will invest about half those savings in improving the state’s treatment, parole and probation programmes.
Mr Williams, who believes Kentucky “incarcerates too many people at too great a cost,” praised the bill for recognising “the possibility for forgiveness and redemption and change in someone’s life”. It passed the Republican-controlled Senate 38-0, and on May 17th Mr Williams went on to win the Republican nomination for governor.
An introduction to the Nova Scotia Restorative Justice Program (NSRJP)
from the paper presented by Janet E. Briggs:
Restorative justice is not a particular practice or type of program, but rather a philosophy, or a set of principles. Restorative justice principles have been emerging in communities across the world. The Nova Scotia Restorative Justice Program (NSRJP), over the past decade has gained attention as a national and world-class leader through its innovative and progressive model. The Nova Scotia Restorative Justice Program is not intended to replace the current criminal justice system....
from SBS Dateline:
Dateline has a touching story of friendship between a woman who was shot and critically injured, and the stranger who attempted to kill her.
Jackie Millar took years to recover after she was shot in the head. She remains almost blind and permanently brain damaged, unable to even remember bringing up her own sons.
Exercising Discretion: The Gateway to Justice
In 2009, 38 per cent of the 1.29 million offences ‘solved’ by police were dealt with outside of the court system. We found that the use of out-of-court disposals has evolved in a piecemeal and largely uncontrolled way. An earlier public survey conducted on behalf of HMIC confirmed general public support for giving first-time offenders a second chance – which out-of-court options certainly offer; but this public support ebbs away when they are used for persistent offenders. Our work also suggested that victim satisfaction is high when offenders take part in RJ approaches. RJ, used appropriately, may also reduce re-offending.